A Lifetime Inventory: Time to Weigh Needs and Wants

Oct 5th, 2008 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

Early reports on the financial crisis suggest at least a part of most retirees’ nest eggs has taken a hit. No surprise. There are a lot of us out here who will need to do some serious reckoning with our resources. Retirees are especially vulnerable, for the most part, because there isn’t a steady income stream when investments are removed from the picture. Social Security and some pension plans help, but can’t cover most living expenses.

There is the rub. It is now appropriate to do a Lifestyle Inventory. This is the moment to determine the needs and wants in our lives and to make the hard choices about what to eliminate, scale down, or reconsider.

Here are some starters:

*Going out to eat.

*Cutting out impulse buying and frivolous purchases. You have to decide what these are for you.

*Consolidating trips to town for incidentals, appointments, uncertain destinations.

*Including everyone in the family to make their own lists and determining their own disciplines.

+Shopping with more intentionality, care and planning. Why not try the local Goodwill?

*Being aware of others and their needs. Don’t let the local food bank shelves go empty or the Salvation Army and Goodwill Stores be without supplies. They are a life source to many.

*Volunteer instead of playing golf or spending idle time at cost intensive activities.

+Plan to continue reviewing your situation (as a group) regularly. Have some method of accountability.

These are a few of the proactive responses one can give to deal with the new economy. Try them on, create your own list, but get serious and be aware that old habits die hard!



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